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Parents urged to join fight against flu

Published: 4 Oct 2017 09:30

Child flu vaccination programme now underway.

Parents of 2-5 year olds are encouraged to join the fight against flu this winter, by ensuring their children get their flu vaccination.

GP practices across Scotland are providing the free nasal flu vaccine in a bid to ensure young children are protected. Primary school children will receive their vaccination at school.

By reducing transmission of the virus, particularly to at-risk groups like the elderly, the child flu vaccination programme is expected to eventually prevent an estimated additional 200 deaths per year, and 1,100 hospitalisations from flu.

Public Health Minister Aileen Campbell today joined four-year-old Lyle Findlay at his vaccination appointment at Govan Health Centre in Glasgow. She said:

“We’re urging all parents across Scotland to join the fight against flu by getting their children vaccinated as early as possible this winter.

“The free nasal vaccine only takes a few minutes and can protect your child from flu for up to a year, so it really is the best defence against the virus which can be extremely infectious and serious. The nasal spray is painless, has an excellent safety record and it doesn’t cause flu.

“Even the healthiest of children can fall seriously ill from flu so it’s really important that they get their vaccine at their GP practice or at school. This will help prevent the spread of the virus to family, friends and others around them.”

Background

Parents of 2-5 year olds not yet at school should contact their GP practice to make an appointment. Parents of primary school children should return their consent form to the school if they have not done so already.

To find out more about the child flu vaccine and to see a short clip of the vaccine being given, visit Immunisation Scotland or call NHS Inform on 0800 22 44 88.